Is it OK to be Busy in Ministry? [EP:107]

Are you busy in ministry?  Is it ok to be busy in ministry?

I will admit that there was a time when I didn’t think it was ok to be busy and I’m now rethinking this idea. I think it depends on what we mean when we say “busy.”


Here are some definitions of busy:

  • activity or fully engaged or occupied
  • Crowded with or characterized by much activity
  • Constant at work, diligent; active.


My friend Amber doesn’t use the word busy. She substitutes the word busy with productive. For her, busyness means a time of increased productivity.


So, if we think about those definitions and concepts of busy there is really nothing wrong with being fully engaged, productive, diligent, and active. Jesus was all of those things. He was active in the work God gave Him. He was focused. There isn’t anything wrong with having seasons where there is a lot to do. Even seasons where you might have to make adjustments for the short term because of a particular event or season in the life of the church.


But here’s the thing, that’s not what I think most of us are talking about when we say we are busy in ministry. Busy is not productive. Our busyness is counterproductive because we just have too much activity. 


When we talk about busy we usually mean that we’re in a place where it is hard to get it all done, in fact, maybe we aren’t getting it all done. Things that need to happen are going by the wayside. When we talk about being busy we don’t mean we are simply occupied, we actually mean we are preoccupied. We are concerned with something else, we are distracted. When we say we are busy, we are saying that there is so much going on that we are sacrificing the most important in the name of trying to get it all done. And our busyness is unending. One season of busy runs into the next until it is a blurred mess.

So, is it ok to be busy in ministry? I think it depends on how we define it.

Sometimes God will call us to seasons that are full and there will be lots of things going on. And yes, there may even be seasons where your typical rhythms are off a bit for a little while. But we need to remember that God won’t call us to stay in those seasons and exceed our limits. He won’t ask us to sacrifice our health, our relationship with Him, our families in the name of being productive for Him.


Busy is ok when we are doing the things God has called us to do and staying connected to the power of the Spirit, guarding hearts and our time so that busyness doesn't just keep on going.


If you are distracted, if you are going too hard and fast, struggling to connect with your spouse, not fully present with the people in your life, irritated, not spending time with God, unable to focus, exhausted...this is the kind of busy that isn’t healthy and it’s time to make some adjustments.

Need Help?


A great strategy is to sit with God and ask, God…where are the busy seasons coming up in the months and weeks ahead and when should I create margin before moving on to the next things? This is one of the questions in the brand new Margin Maker Planner. Grab your copy on Amazon today!



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